Beach Tennis- Gotta Love it

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Despite it being freezing outside and in nearly 90% of this country right now, To warm us all up a bit… let’s imagine the beach. It’s 90 degrees out, the sun’s bright and warm, and we’re soaking up the rays. I’m in a muscle shirt, I’ve got a racket in my hand, a ball in the air, and I’m having fun. I’m on a beach.

Wait… huh? A racquet sport on sand?

That’s right, I’m playing beach tennis. Not a very popular sport, but it’s getting there. Beach tennis has been around for around 10 years. First played in Germany, brought to Aruba, and from there to the States.

The sport itself is remarkably similar to tennis. Depending on the version of the game you’re playing, the racket can be a standard tennis racket, or a special beach tennis paddle (similar to those used in platform tennis). The ball is a standard tennis ball with just one difference: tennis balls are pressurized to 12 psi while beach tennis balls are pressurized to 6 psi.

As for the court, it’s smaller. The court is a standard beach volleyball court (8 meters by 16 meters, ).Instead of the eight quadrants of a tennis court (4 service boxes + 4 boxes” between service line and baseline) and 4 alleys, a beach tennis court has only four boxes. Each side is divided into two boxes. The net is a little taller, standing at 170cm. Simple, and elegant.

Beach tennis is played not unlike badminton. Unlike in badminton, serves can be as close to the net as the server desires. The server must serve to the opposing player. Afterwards, play continues as normal (in tennis, or in badminton), with each side getting one hit. The ball can never touch the ground/sand. The ball, of course, can also never travel beyond the confines of the court. If the ball hits the net, the ball is still in play. Essentially, beach tennis is a glorified version of badminton that’s a little more fast paced, is played on the warm beach.

Scoring is remarkably similar to tennis. Standard beach tennis sets are tennis pro sets,” sets to 8 games. Games are scored similar to those in tennis: 15-love, 30-love, 40-love, game. However, there are no deuces. Each set takes roughly 30 minutes to play.

Beach tennis will not hurt your tennis game. It’s a game that relies on touch, rather than overwhelming power, and will help your game at net.

Beach tennis is an extraordinarily fun game, and one that I urge you to try out. It combines the best of tennis, badminton and beach volleyball all into one. It’s also an emerging sport, so it’s entirely possible that you can win a couple of tournaments and earn a ranking fairly quickly (for those of you interested in that). Go ahead and try it out! At the very least, you won’t be freezing like you are now.

Some excellent beach tennis paddles available at the Tennis Depot can be found here:

http://www.thetennisdepot.com/beachtennis/beach-tennis/pro-supex.html

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